5.9/10
563
15 user 14 critic

The Substance of Fire (1996)

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1:40 | Trailer

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Publishing magnate refuses to publish a book by his son's male lover so the kids buy out their father and run it themselves!

Director:

Daniel J. Sullivan

Writers:

Jon Robin Baitz (play), Jon Robin Baitz (screenplay)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Tony Goldwyn ... Aaron Geldhart
Benjamin Ungar Benjamin Ungar ... Young Isaac Geldhart
Timothy Hutton ... Martin Geldhart
Tom McDermott ... Old Printer
Sarah Jessica Parker ... Sarah Geldhart
George Morfogen George Morfogen ... Otto the printer
Ron Rifkin ... Isaac Geldhart
Lee Grant ... Cora Cahn
Andrew Pang ... Mr. Otani jr
Edmund Ikeda Edmund Ikeda ... Mr. Otani sr
Elizabeth Franz ... Miss Barzakian
Gil Bellows ... Val Chenard
Eric Bogosian ... Gene Byck
Ronny Graham Ronny Graham ... Louis Foukold
John Sullivan John Sullivan ... Stewart
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Storyline

Isaac Geldhart is a Holocaust survivor who, overcome by grief at the recent death of his wife, seems determined to run his publishing firm into the ground by printing books that have no hope of financial success. His son Aaron, who also works at the company, grows frustrated with Isaac's emotional decline and attempts to take over the firm. The resulting crisis involves Isaac's other two children, his daughter Sarah and his dying son Martin. Written by Jesse Garon <grifter@primenet.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Doing What Is Right... Could Cost Him Everything.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 March 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A tűz melege See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$56,221, 16 March 1997, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$56,221, 16 March 1997
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Miramax See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Viola Davis. See more »

Quotes

Social Services worker: It's a process. No one person can come to a conclusion.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Showbiz Today: Episode dated 28 August 1995 (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Such an underrated film
18 March 2009 | by ribby45See all my reviews

Love this to bits & wish I'd seen the play. Everyone comes out it with integrity, acting their socks off. Even minor characters are substantial & memorable. Subject matter aside, this glimpse of literary, educated New York is so rare. Hard to believe that SJP in 'Sex and the City' is the same actress in this film - here we see what she is really capable of doing. Timothy Hutton is a wonder - why isn't he a bigger star, in the general scheme of things? Ron Rifkin, of course, can do no wrong. It would have been so easy to make his character sympathetic & saintly -thankfully, Jon Robin Baitz doesn't fall into this trap. Only one criticism - could have done with a little more back story, for this viewer. Anyone who wants to know why the Shoah isn't over for many, many people could do worse than watch this film. Twice.


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